Gonzalezs father was separated from his son for 11 years
Interview with the father of
one of the five Cubans incarcerated in the United States for the sole crime of combating
terrorism against Cuba organized from Miami
ON the telephone he would assure his father:
"Im fine, old man, no problems." On the island they would doubt him and
say: "hes having us on..."
After 11 years without seeing his son, Cándido René
González visited him at the end of April in the Loretto, Pennsylvania penitentiary.
"He looked good, strong and in great spirits," recounts the father of one of the
five men who fought against terrorism and is currently imprisoned in the United States for
alerting the Cuban government to acts of terrorism planned by the Miami mafia.
René was sentenced to 15 years in jail, the lightest
sentence given in the United States to those young men who were defending Cuban citizens
from criminal acts organized in Miami.
In an interview with the National News Agency (AIN),
Renes father affirmed, "He and his four comrades all keep each others
spirits up," adding, "in these two years of struggle in defense of our sons
Ive learned more than in all my close to 70 years of age. I feel much more
Recalling his life in Cuba during the 50s,
Renés father tells how he was contracted as a professional baseball player in the
United States but never got to play in a U.S. stadium. "We had some rough times, very
rough. Ive always been a rebel and the situation in Cuba was terrible. Batista had
carried out the coup. I had experienced the political machinations, the abuses and the
mobsters, but I still wasnt a revolutionary. We followed our countrys
situation from there in the United States. In the Hispanic neighborhood we managed to get
the Bohemia magazine and met people who were going to Cuba who told us what
was going on. Then in 1957, the 26th of July Movement was founded and Irma and I joined
René, their first son, was born in the United States
and then came his younger brother Roberto. In 1961, the year that the Revolution defeated
the mercenary forces at the Bay of Pigs, the González-Sehwerert family returned to Cuba,
after a visit in 1959 when Cándido was able to confirm U.S. manipulation of the truth
regarding changes taking place on the island.
When asked how René is handling his unjust
incarceration, his father responded: "He exercises a lot, asked about everyone in the
family, about friends and neighbors, the country in general, and told us about the many
letters he receives on a daily basis." Letters arrive from all over the world,
including the United States, from people who want to learn more about his case and who are
in solidarity with his cause.
"René reads and writes a lot, and confessed
that sometimes he cant respond to the huge volume of letters he receives," says
his father, who sees his son as a serious but cheerful person and a wonderful father.
"Hes always concerned about his daughters. Hes caring and demanding and
always helped Irmita, his older daughter, with her schoolwork."
Cándido recalls how his sons were educated in a
revolutionary environment, where the family undertook voluntary work, kept guard in the
neighborhood and in their workplaces. All of them were inspired by the spirit of Che and
"René dreamed of being a pilot," his
father commented. "First he did a course on aerial fumigation and then one on
In December 1990, Cándido René received the
terrible news: his son had left illegally for the United States. "I fell apart,"
he confessed, but he also recognized that his son was a grown man and had made his own
decision. "During all those years I received news of him through his mother but we
never spoke or wrote. Sometimes I imagined things and deep down I had my suspicions
because my son is so strong about his convictions."
Inside, his father believed René had not given up on
his ideals. Eight years after his departure, on Monday September 14, 1998, two days after
René was detained in Miami, he learnt the truth. On the one hand, Cándido felt proud
but, on the other hand he was worried about his sons condition after having spent 17
months and 48 days in solitary confinement in a maximum-security cell.
"All that lengthy trial process has been
terrible, weve suffered a lot and theyve suffered even more..."
He has no doubts regarding his sons dignity. In
his statement given on the day of his sentence, on December 14, René González stated:
"A little over two years ago I received a letter
from my father in which, among other things, he expressed his hope that a jury would be
found with the values of Washington, Jefferson and Lincoln. Its a pity he
authorities must act against the Miami mafia and extreme right
Cuban-Americans who today, after 40 years, continue to engage
in acts of terrorism against Cuba are clearly linked to the
darkest episodes in recent U.S. history: the assassination of
President Kennedy, the Watergate scandal, ...
can’t trust the FBI
A group of U.S.
senators recently requested an independent investigation into
the FBI, as they believe the organization can no longer be
--Accused of spying for defending their
country from the Miami mafias terrorism
THE first of a series of roundtable
broadcasts, presenting information on the case of the five Cubans held prisoner and
unjustly charged with spying in the United States, made clear the reasons justifying those
young mens behavior.